Opening: 15. June, 7 PM
Duration: 16. June – 18. September 2023
The photographer Rüdiger Trautsch from Hamburg, who died in the fall of 2021, is the most important chronicler of the gay and later queer movement in Germany. His work (the estate is in the archives of the Schwules Museum) includes photographs of the first gay protest marches in Münster and West Berlin in the 1970s up to the last Folsom events before Corona in Berlin. In between are celebrity shots of Warhol and Mapplethorpe, images of the legendary Hamburg house club Front, shots of bear parties, and his drag and couples series. Trautsch’s pictures move between documentation and art. They are indispensable visual material for queer historiography in Germany, but his work also offers moving individual shots that reflect a very special relationship to his subject. The exhibition Photography as a Way of Life presents an overview of the five decades of Trautsch’s work, focusing on one motif: for photographer Rüdiger Trautsch, the camera was a means of making contact with people rather than just a device. In Rüdiger Trautsch’s life, photography became not only a cultural practice, but also a social one: taking pictures to make friends.
Curated by Peter Rehberg, assisted byDragan Simicevic and Jessica Walter
Image: Front Club Hamburg, 1983, Rüdiger Trautsch/SMU